An arrest has been made in the homicide that left a 20-year-old Evansville woman dead in a Warrick County parking lot.
The Warrick County Sheriff's Office arrested Isaiah Hagan, 22, of Evansville on preliminary charges of murder, murder while attempting to commit robbery, robbery resulting in serious bodily injury and obstruction of justice in the death of Halee Rathgeber.
Hagan had his first hearing Tuesday afternoon when Judge Greg Granger detailed the charges.
Granger told Hagan that the robbery charge could be alleged as a result of taking money, keys, a cellphone or a wallet from a person with force while obstruction of justice could be alleged as a result of taking, altering or damaging a cellphone or a wallet as a means to keep evidence from law enforcement officials.
Warrick County Prosecutor Mike Perry said an individual is charged with felony murder when that murder takes place as a result of another crime, such as robbery.
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Both offenses, murder and murder while attempting to commit robbery, hold the same penalties, he said.
Both murder charges could mean 45 to 65 years in jail and a fine of up to $10,000.
Robbery resulting in serious bodily injury is a Level 2 felony which could mean 10 to 30 years in jail and up to $10,000 in fines. Obstruction of justice is a Level 6 felony which incurs a penalty of six months to two and a half years and up to $10,000 in fines.
Hagan told Granger in his hearing that he had previously worked at Lowe's for two weeks and worked at Coca Cola Bottling Company prior to that for four months. Hagan said he also coached basketball games with his father.
Sheriff Brett Kruse said Hagan and Rathgeber had been acquaintances.
He said tips from the public helped initially in the early investigation.
"There was a lot of work done in a week," he said. "There is still more work to be done in the investigation."
A probable cause affidavit was still sealed on Tuesday before press time. Perry said the documents remain sealed until warrants are returned in the investigation.
The Warrick County Sheriff's Office launched the investigation after Rathgeber's body was found in the parking lot of the Alcoa Soccer Complex west of Newburgh.
The department was assisted by the Indiana State Police, the FBI, the Evansville Police Department, the Vanderburgh County Sheriff's Office and the U.S. Marshal's Service.
Funeral services were held for Rathgeber earlier this week. She was remembered by the community, her coworkers and classmates at the University of Southern Indiana where she studied nursing.
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